ISLAMABAD: A large of marquees and wedding halls in Islamabad lack the provision of dedicated and approved parking space. These marquees make use of empty government land, green belts and roadsides to park vehicles, according to documents available with Pakistan Today.
Majority of Marquees located in Sector E-11, including Wedding Marquee, Monal Marquee, Paragon Marquee, Paragon-2 Marquee, Blessings Marquee, Royals Marquee, Zakia’s Marquee, and Taj Marquee lack proper parking facilities. Resultantly, Margalla Road near sector E-11 and the connecting road between F-11 and E-11 often gets choked with traffic jams, much to the agony of the commuters.
The Capital Development Authority (CDA) along with District Administration on Saturday launched a massive anti-encroachment operation in sectors H-13 and G-12, where most marquees are located. Eight marquees and wedding halls were lacking parking lots and were using green belts for parking. However, Venue Marquee, Galaxy Marquee along with other three marquees were demolished.
According to sources inside the civic agency, the government high-ups are planning to undertake strict action against non-conforming use of adjacent land by the marquee owners and will leave no stone unturned against those who fail to conform or make arrangement for proper parking space.
In the past, it has been observed that when CDA’s anti-encroachment operations was only restricted to poor localities while farm houses of famous politicians, generals, businessmen and bureaucrats were spared. This time around, the city managers are focusing on influential and moneyed businesses. It is expected that an action against influential encroachers in posh sectors like G-12, E-12 would commence soon.
Anti-encroachment drive continues in full swing
A long overdue anti-encroachment operation by CDA and ICT Administration continued for the second day on Kashmir Highway along with sectors G-12 and H-13. The operation was conducted to get the Right of Way (ROW) back from the illegal occupants. Golden Horse Marquee and Galaxy Marquee were razed for illegal construction and violating by-laws. Also, residential accommodations near Kashmir Highway have also been razed. At the time of filing this story, 21 structures including marquees, workshops, markets and residential quarters were razed.
It is pertinent to mention that amidst the fully developed sectors of Islamabad lies sector G-12, known locally as Meeran Abadi. Thousands of acres of pristine land occupied by the so-called locals has become a ‘no go area’ for many since illegal encroachments, construction of commercial and private property and other criminal activities continue with wanton disregard to laws of the land and CDA regulations.
The proposed sector G-12 is an anomaly in an otherwise well-planned, well-developed and CDA maintained capital city. The civic agency has acquired the land from the locals but for past three decades it has failed to take possession.
Also, due to the illegal occupancy by locals, sectors like G-13, G-14, F-14 and housing society near motorway are connected to mainland Islamabad with only one road, Kashmir Highway. No service road and inter-sector roads exist.